Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Instinct - Embracing Your Birth Experience

Welcome to the June 2012 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Embracing Your Birth Experience
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants have written about at least one part of their birth experience that they can hold up and cherish.

Embracing your birth experience is tougher to write about than it initially sounded.  I attempted to write this post in my thoughts, and every time I thought of a wonderful part of one of my births, I would qualify it with a not-so-wonderful part.  Then I would backtrack and say to myself, “No, this is supposed to be embracing the good, not the negative.” 

I am choosing to write about instinct.  The wonderful moment where you don’t think, you don’t rationalize, you just know.

I had a moment when my first daughter was being born.  I was in the tub, listening to my Hypnobabies scripts.  I had probably been in the tub for a couple hours.  I had thoughts drift in and out of my head about how long this would last, but at that moment I had an empty mind.  Suddenly I became alert.  I told Floyd to get the midwife.  I asked before I thought, and I can’t pinpoint what triggered it.  The midwife came in and she said maybe I should try going to the bathroom.  I got out of the tub, sat on the toilet, and then I felt pushy.   The moment I became alert and asked for the midwife, I knew I was completely dilated; no one needed to check me.  I knew something had changed, and I knew it before there were any outward cues or internal feelings.   It was instinct.

A moment I had in my second daughter’s birth was the moment I knew I was in labor.  The last month I had had tons of Braxton Hicks contractions and I had had weird crampy feelings that I couldn’t identify.  But when I woke up, that Sunday morning, I knew that the feelings I were having was labor. It had started and it was “real”.

Another moment was not my own, but was my youngest daughters’.  My memory is kind of fuzzy. It was the middle of the night.  I had had a caesarean and was tired, sore, and not mobile.  I had been instructed by the nurses to keep Allie’s clothes on so she didn’t catch a chill, but I must have taken them off.  I don’t remember taking them off, but I have a memory of a bare baby crawling across my chest, finding my nipple and nursing.  The majority of the time in the hospital I had difficulty nursing, but at that moment there was instinct on her part, and nothing to inhibit it.  I was half asleep, and didn’t appreciate the beauty of it, till much later, when the memory surfaced.

I can embrace those moments, and reflect in awe of knowledge not learned, but inherited.
Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:
(This list will be live and updated by afternoon June 12 with all the carnival links.)


Kat said...

I love this! I feel like my babies have ultimately been the greatest contributors to my healing emotionally from their birth experiences...and it all does come down to allowing the growth of motherhood, of that innate sense of knowing, to come forth.

Tat @ Mum in search said...

Instinct is such a great choice to focus on and I love the image of the naked baby crawling across your chest.

MomeeeZen said...

Aw you made me cry. Happy tears of course...and tears of commiseration! Thanks for sharing!

Terri said...

Ah that beautiful instinctual feeling - what a joyful blessing if we are allowed to tap into it. A great reminder. I have similar experiences for both my births and wasn't near any medical professional until I was fully dilated both times. I wish I could tap into my own instinct as fully in parenting day by day as I did with birthing!

Dionna @ Code Name: Mama said...

I love the breast crawl!! What a sweet memory to have of your daughter's birth. I have similar fuzzy memories of my son's birth, and can only recall one moment of laying and peacefully nursing him. But I love that one memory :)

aNonyMous said...

What an interesting way to look at it. Instinct is just an amazing part of birth. It served me well during the birth of my daughter. Thanks for sharing.

Andrea @ talesofgoodness said...

I know just what you mean. And the best part is that those moments continue (or for some - start) beyond birth. Sometimes I wake in the night moments before one of my kids wakes up - I just know they need me. Lovely piece.

Alinka @ Baby Web said...

Wow! How amazing that you knew when you were dilated! I wonder if this will happen to me when I give birth next month! How wonderful that you decided to consciously embrace the positive and let go of the negative.